Happy New Year! I’m coming back to you from winter hiatus later than anticipated, due to an extended illness and the now-historic teacher’s strike here in Los Angeles. During that time (which also saw LA pounded by torrential rains and floods), my daughters and I holed up at home and often lived vicariously through the videos of my guest today: homesteader Kip Smyth of the 1000’s of Roots YouTube channel. Via twice-weekly vlogs, Kip, his wife Carrie and their six children—ages 15 years to 19 months—document their permaculture-homesteading and homeschooling adventures living on a 500-square-foot off-grid home set on 20 acres in the Missouri Ozarks.
The Smyth family’s stripped-down way of life is deeply rooted in their Christian faith; and yet, as Kip reveals in this interview, this was an existence he never could have imagined growing up as a self-described “jock” in a secular family in suburban Los Angeles. Here, we talk about consumerism overload, his calling to Christianity, homesteading from scratch, and so much more.
Kip’s troublemaker childhood in Thousand Oaks, CA
From the party scene to finding himself on his family’s land in Alaska: “That’s when crazy stuff started happening to me”
Becoming a Christian, Simpson University as a 25-year-old freshman, and meeting Carrie
Arizona, the housing bubble and discovering Joel Salatin
Working at Home Depot: “If consumerism is the problem, then I need to become a producer”
Back to Alaska, and a brief foray into hunting and fishing
Strategic Relocation and why the Smyths chose Missouri
Primitive skills and the problem with the prepper mindset
Learning to homestead from scratch, building debt-free, and the long-term vision for 1000’s of Roots
Faith, their lifestyle as a calling, and Kip’s advice for other wannabe homesteading families